Don’t Do it Alone

I just want to share with you what I have read in John C. Maxwell’s book, “Developing the Leader within You.

According to John, leaders don’t do it alone. They employ others to fulfill the vision. And in the process, they develop them.

In the story, John tells of a person who attempted to just do the opposite. The person tried to move five hundred pounds of bricks from the top of a four-story building to the sidewalk below…and he tried to do it alone.

On an insurance claim form, he explained what happened:

It would have taken too long to carry the bricks down by hand, so I decided to put them in a barrel and lower them by a pulley which I had fastened to the top of the building.

After tying the rope securely at the ground level, I then went up to the top of the building. I fastened the rope around the barrel, loaded it with the bricks, and swung it out over the sidewalk for the descent.

Then I went down to the sidewalk and untied the rope, holding it securely to guide the barrel down slowly. But since I weigh only one hundred and forty pounds, the five-hundred pound load jerked me from the ground so fast that I didn’t have time to think of letting go of the rope. And as I passed between the second and third floors, I met the barrel coming down. This accounts for the bruises and lacerations on my upper body.

I held tightly to the rope until I reached the top, where my hand became jammed in the pulley. This accounts for my broken thumb. At the same time, however, the barrel hit the sidewalk with a bang and the bottom fell out. With the weight of the bricks gone, the barrel weighed only about forty pounds. Thus, my one-hundred-forty-pound body begun a swift decent, and I met the empty barrel coming up. This accounts for my broken ankle.

Slowed only slightly, I continued the descent and landed on a pile of bricks. This accounts for my sprained back and broken collar-bone.

At this point, I lost my presence of mind completely and let go of the rope. And the empty barrel came crashing down on me. This accounts for my head injuries.

As for the last question on the form, ‘What would you do if the same situation arose again?’ please be advised that I’m finished trying to do the job alone.”

Hope you enjoyed it. Have a nice day!

Not by Argument

When I first read the saying, “PEOPLE ARE CONVINCED NOT BY ARGUMENTS BUT BY OBSERVATION,” I pondered deeply about it.

For someone who is so interested in logical inferences, I was a little bit skeptical. For many years I believed that arguments are the best tool for convincing people. Set the right premises, and express clearly the conclusion, and that’s it, if you are good enough, your arguments will be irrefutable. People will be convinced.

I was wrong.

Gradually I have observed and learned that verbal argument actually sometimes is the last part in the process of changing minds. After we have observed enough actions, our mind becomes open to the arguments behind that action. If in case, arguments come first, we tend to wait for compelling actions before we are convinced. Then again, after we have carefully observed the action, the arguments just naturally follows.

If a person wants me to believe that he’s trustworthy, no amount of argument will convince me; I need to observe his actions.

If in case a person shows me trustworthiness in her action, even without explaining, I will be convinced that I can trust her.